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Author Topic: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?  (Read 5605 times)

jdramirez

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #30 on: April 04, 2014, 11:06:47 AM »
Pentax makes bodies and lenses but they aren't really on our radar screen. 

It just depends on what you want to be.  Do you want to make lenses and bodies or do you want to make systems.  I think sigma is more the former than the latter. 
Upgrade  path.->means the former was sold for the latter.

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #30 on: April 04, 2014, 11:06:47 AM »

Grumbaki

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #31 on: April 04, 2014, 11:54:03 AM »
despite all relevant comparison already mentioned, I think I'd point out the Sega story. Better make money with other companies than die trying to force your proprietary system on consumers. (before all the others 80's kids come down on me, I have to say I was a a Sega boy ;) )

jdramirez

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #32 on: April 04, 2014, 12:12:47 PM »
despite all relevant comparison already mentioned, I think I'd point out the Sega story. Better make money with other companies than die trying to force your proprietary system on consumers. (before all the others 80's kids come down on me, I have to say I was a a Sega boy ;) )

I liked the dream cast... but I want motivated to buy it. I went ps2.  But I did buy crazy taxi and the other Sega related games... not all.. but some.
Upgrade  path.->means the former was sold for the latter.

XS->60D->5d Mkiii:18-55->24-105L:75-300->55-250->70-300->70-200 f4L USM->70-200 f/2.8L USM->70-200 f/2.8L IS Mkii:50 f/1.8->50 f/1.4->100L->85mm f/1.8 USM-> 8mm ->100L & 85L

TexPhoto

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #33 on: April 04, 2014, 01:04:08 PM »
“To make money” was the most obvious answer and I thought that was already covered but I appreciate your take on that – why limit your production to only one camera system.

It was only until today that I discovered that Sigma also makes camera bodies… I can’t recall a company making parts for themselves and and a competitor / rival. It’s akin to finding out Chevy also builds parts for their trucks and for Ford, too.

I am more interested in the actual thought process beyond that such as; “here’s a great company that makes great camera body – like us – let’s make lenses for them, too.” Was there a eureka moment that someone had and said “Since we can’t make the best cameras out there, why not we make the best lenses for the best cameras!?”

Actually...

I like your car example... it is very fitting.

In the camera world you have a couple of big players and a bunch of small players... same as the automotive world. In the automotive world it is very normal for specialty companies to take motors and transmissions from larger companies and to use them in their vehicles... remember Delorean and Bricklin???

I believe Sigma started off making lenses and did not have their own camera at first... the camera came later.

This is not unusual.  It's probably unusual for a big company to not bleed into competitors products.  Especially the way they buy smaller companies and sell of branches.  When i worked for Lucent technologies we looked into buy a smaller company only to find out they were owned by a company we already owned.  And we were their major supplier.

2nd, To borrow from your car theme, look at Lotus.  They make cars, and they also provide engineering services for their clients including: Ford, Delorean, Vauxhaul, Dodge, Tesla, Austin Martin, Toyota, and I'm getting tired of typing them.

But this is far more common than you think.  Sony sells cameras… and sensors to almost everybody who sells cameras.  Microsoft sells Operating systems, and products for other operating systems. 

But I think the best thing about Sigma is the are the wolves nipping at the heals of Canon and Nikon.  Canon and Nikon are spurred to innovate to stay ahead, and keep prices tolerable.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014, 01:13:43 PM by TexPhoto »

CarlTN

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #34 on: April 04, 2014, 06:11:00 PM »
It seems you are new to digital photography...it's good you are here trying to learn.
You’re absolutely right – I’ve always had a P&S (Point and Shoot) Canon camera for all of my work just to take pictures of things to put in my graphic design work but recently I’ve become far more serious about my images and upgraded to the Rebel to work with different settings, higher resolutions, and long exposures. I came here to learn via advice from my professor – gravitate to where all the smart people hang out and interact with them with intelligent questions.

Thank you and everyone for merely participating on this forum and contributing to the education of newbies like me and others.


The question I have for you folks now (besides “What do you think their original business model looked like?”) is there ONE must-have Sigma lens for Canon owners?

So this is yet another Sigma bashing thread, big surprise.  Yawn...

I hope that comment isn’t directed towards me – I have no opinion for nor against Sigma. I’m only interested in their original business model and how the founders of the company came to the conclusion of making lenses for other camera bodies out of pure academic curiosity.

Here is what Wikipedia has to say about Sigma.  I don't think the company began very recently, they have quite a history.  Began in 1961.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sigma_Corporation

I'm not sure there is "one" Sigma lens that every Canon owner must have.  Why would there need to be one "must have" lens?  Does any camera company produce one "must have" product?  And if so, is that a positive attribute for that company?  Or would that serve to highlight the company's weaknesses? 

Eric, I was not meaning to offend you.  But it does seem your thread is meant to question Sigma's motives, implying you are wondering whether they should be in business or not.  Naturally the snobs on this forum enjoy bashing third party lens manufacturers as often as they can, with Sigma being their number 1 target.  Their thought process is "well, if you can afford to commit to photography, you buy the best, and in general Sigma are not the best camera company or lens manufacturer.  Therefore, I'll get my jollies deriding Sigma and anyone who purchases its products, because I'm a forum troll overloaded with testosterone, and I need to point out the inferiority of others so that I can try to fill the hole of hate and inferiority in myself."

A thread like this, is kind of like a net, and the trolls, are the fishermen.

In my opinion, I wonder why more people don't bash Tamron?  Their lenses, as a whole, are inferior to Sigma's.  They don't even attempt to make cameras.  Does that mean they are the inferior company?

Really, how dare Sigma manufacture cameras...the nerve of them.  The nerve of anyone who would ever try one.  They'd have to be a complete idiot, wouldn't they?  What motivates them to be such an idiot?

EricFiskCGD

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #35 on: April 04, 2014, 09:32:29 PM »
Hey again, Carl;

My curiosity was spurred by a conversation in Marketing class and the question “Why do companies do what they do, besides for money?” In my experience, nobody does something just for the money. They do what they because they are very good at something and they want to make money while doing that.

I have no reason nor desire to trash Sigma – if anything I’m extremely curious about their products and I’m looking forward to trying one of them out in the near future. I’m also curious about the company’s history after reading their website “about” page and watching their promotional video.

I’m not offended by your comments and I totally admit that I’m questioning Sigma’s motives but only in a positive way – how does one go about saying “I want to only make lenses for other people”? Or how does someone start a company specializing in a very specific aspect of the market; akin to why would Logitech want to build nothing but after-market keyboards and mice, or the origins of Wacom who makes tables. I’m curious about the origins of ventures and in this case I’m curious about the ‘origin story’ of Sigma.

I hope you didn't think I'm out to trash Sigma - not in the slightest bit. If so, amends.

As for my question about what’s the Sigma lens to have, you’re right that it’s an invalid question since it’s not specific enough… too general of a question. In the immediate future I need to do macro photography, closes ups of specific objects for graphic design projects like catalogs. What I really want to do is to astro-photography.
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CarlTN

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #36 on: April 04, 2014, 09:59:00 PM »
Hey again, Carl;

My curiosity was spurred by a conversation in Marketing class and the question “Why do companies do what they do, besides for money?” In my experience, nobody does something just for the money. They do what they because they are very good at something and they want to make money while doing that.

I have no reason nor desire to trash Sigma – if anything I’m extremely curious about their products and I’m looking forward to trying one of them out in the near future. I’m also curious about the company’s history after reading their website “about” page and watching their promotional video.

I’m not offended by your comments and I totally admit that I’m questioning Sigma’s motives but only in a positive way – how does one go about saying “I want to only make lenses for other people”? Or how does someone start a company specializing in a very specific aspect of the market; akin to why would Logitech want to build nothing but after-market keyboards and mice, or the origins of Wacom who makes tables. I’m curious about the origins of ventures and in this case I’m curious about the ‘origin story’ of Sigma.

I hope you didn't think I'm out to trash Sigma - not in the slightest bit. If so, amends.

As for my question about what’s the Sigma lens to have, you’re right that it’s an invalid question since it’s not specific enough… too general of a question. In the immediate future I need to do macro photography, closes ups of specific objects for graphic design projects like catalogs. What I really want to do is to astro-photography.

Those are different types of photography, but very likely what most other posters will suggest, is that you just buy the Canon 100L, and forget ever even trying Sigma lenses.

And again, it says Sigma started as a camera company, in the film days, 1961.  This is just off the top of my head, but Post World War II Japan saw the influx of capitalism and free markets...the profit motive.  Before this their markets were centered around pleasing their emperor, and his desire was to conquer the Pacific Rim countries.  So it was an economy based on building the machines of war, since the early 20th century.  America didn't like this, so we fought them...and they gave us a good excuse when they drew first blood attacking Pearl Harbor.  Sigma's founders loved cameras and photography, so that was their motivation.  I suspect that after a few years, they realized they couldn't compete with Canon and Nikon, so the focus turned more to just lenses (this likely became their primary focus by the late 1980's, if not before).  As for their "foveon" sensor, it was designed by an American in California named "Merrill" in the late 1990's, hence they later named a recent generation of their cameras "Merrill". 

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #36 on: April 04, 2014, 09:59:00 PM »

EricFiskCGD

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #37 on: April 04, 2014, 10:04:25 PM »

And again, it says Sigma started as a camera company, in the film days, 1961.  This is just off the top of my head, but Post World War II Japan saw the influx of capitalism and free markets...the profit motive.  Before this their markets were centered around pleasing their emperor, and his desire was to conquer the Pacific Rim countries.  So it was an economy based on building the machines of war, since the early 20th century.  America didn't like this, so we fought them...and they gave us a good excuse when they drew first blood attacking Pearl Harbor.  Sigma's founders loved cameras and photography, so that was their motivation.  I suspect that after a few years, they realized they couldn't compete with Canon and Nikon, so the focus turned more to just lenses (this likely became their primary focus by the late 1980's, if not before).  As for their "foveon" sensor, it was designed by an American in California named "Merrill" in the late 1990's, hence they later named a recent generation of their cameras "Merrill".

Thanks! I think that's the background story I've been looking for.

Quote
Those are different types of photography, but very likely what most other posters will suggest, is that you just buy the Canon 100L, and forget ever even trying Sigma lenses.

I don't rule anything out and Sigma will be welcome in my Camera bag in the near future.
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CarlTN

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #38 on: April 05, 2014, 02:01:57 AM »

And again, it says Sigma started as a camera company, in the film days, 1961.  This is just off the top of my head, but Post World War II Japan saw the influx of capitalism and free markets...the profit motive.  Before this their markets were centered around pleasing their emperor, and his desire was to conquer the Pacific Rim countries.  So it was an economy based on building the machines of war, since the early 20th century.  America didn't like this, so we fought them...and they gave us a good excuse when they drew first blood attacking Pearl Harbor.  Sigma's founders loved cameras and photography, so that was their motivation.  I suspect that after a few years, they realized they couldn't compete with Canon and Nikon, so the focus turned more to just lenses (this likely became their primary focus by the late 1980's, if not before).  As for their "foveon" sensor, it was designed by an American in California named "Merrill" in the late 1990's, hence they later named a recent generation of their cameras "Merrill".

Thanks! I think that's the background story I've been looking for.

Quote
Those are different types of photography, but very likely what most other posters will suggest, is that you just buy the Canon 100L, and forget ever even trying Sigma lenses.

I don't rule anything out and Sigma will be welcome in my Camera bag in the near future.

Well, that is good, glad I could help...I've not seen your posts before today, so I welcome you to the forum!

AlanF

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #39 on: April 05, 2014, 08:26:44 AM »

And again, it says Sigma started as a camera company, in the film days, 1961.  This is just off the top of my head, but Post World War II Japan saw the influx of capitalism and free markets...the profit motive.  Before this their markets were centered around pleasing their emperor, and his desire was to conquer the Pacific Rim countries.  So it was an economy based on building the machines of war, since the early 20th century.  America didn't like this, so we fought them...and they gave us a good excuse when they drew first blood attacking Pearl Harbor.  Sigma's founders loved cameras and photography, so that was their motivation.  I suspect that after a few years, they realized they couldn't compete with Canon and Nikon, so the focus turned more to just lenses (this likely became their primary focus by the late 1980's, if not before).  As for their "foveon" sensor, it was designed by an American in California named "Merrill" in the late 1990's, hence they later named a recent generation of their cameras "Merrill".

Thanks! I think that's the background story I've been looking for.

Quote
Those are different types of photography, but very likely what most other posters will suggest, is that you just buy the Canon 100L, and forget ever even trying Sigma lenses.

I don't rule anything out and Sigma will be welcome in my Camera bag in the near future.

Well, that is good, glad I could help...I've not seen your posts before today, so I welcome you to the forum!

According to Sigma's own official history, they started to produce their first lenses in 1961 but didn't produce their first SLR until 1976.

http://www.sigmauser.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=51&Itemid=67
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Don Haines

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #40 on: April 05, 2014, 10:44:58 AM »
As for my question about what’s the Sigma lens to have, you’re right that it’s an invalid question since it’s not specific enough… too general of a question. In the immediate future I need to do macro photography, closes ups of specific objects for graphic design projects like catalogs. What I really want to do is to astro-photography.

Sigma (and Tamron) are companies in transition. For a long time (with a few exceptions) both have been known for fairly poor quality optics but at a great price.. Recently, both have been coming out with good to great optics at a good price.... The Sigma ART lenses and the Tamron 150-600 shocked everyone. For wide skies astronomy, I would be very tempted with the 35F1.4... It is supposed to be a great lens, although I have not heard anything about it from the astronomy crowd..

If you do decide to go into astrophotography, look at tracking mounts.... they will do more to help you than and camera or lens will...
The best camera is the one in your hands

EricFiskCGD

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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #41 on: April 05, 2014, 11:15:52 AM »

According to Sigma's own official history, they started to produce their first lenses in 1961 but didn't produce their first SLR until 1976.

http://www.sigmauser.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=51&Itemid=67

Wonderful link, Thanks, Alan!


Sigma (and Tamron) are companies in transition. For a long time (with a few exceptions) both have been known for fairly poor quality optics but at a great price.. Recently, both have been coming out with good to great optics at a good price.... The Sigma ART lenses and the Tamron 150-600 shocked everyone. For wide skies astronomy, I would be very tempted with the 35F1.4... It is supposed to be a great lens, although I have not heard anything about it from the astronomy crowd..

Again, more great lenses to put on my Amazon wish-list.

Quote
If you do decide to go into astrophotography, look at tracking mounts.... they will do more to help you than and camera or lens will...

There's a thread here that I've been following that's more of an education on the topic that I hope to join in after I get some deep sky images under my belt.
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Re: Philosophical question about Sigma Lenses - Why?
« Reply #41 on: April 05, 2014, 11:15:52 AM »